Wynnstay set to return to growth
Llansantffraid-based agricultural group Wynnstay's annual general meeting willhear that it is on track to return to growth in the current financial year.
The group, which has its Wynnstay Arable head office at Shrewsbury, said the trading environment for farmers had continued to show signs of recovery, with farm output prices higher year-on-year.
"This is encouraging although, as yet, it is too early to determine the strength of the recovery. There are important seasonal trading months ahead for Wynnstay, particularly for feed sales and these will influence the outcome for the half year.
"Nonetheless, at this stage, we continue to remain encouraged that Wynnstay is on track to return to growth in the current financial year," it said in a statement issued ahead of the AGM.
In the agricultural division, demand for ruminant feed has increased year-on-year, reflecting national trends. Fertiliser sales have been good as farmers purchased ahead of anticipated price increases. Demand for spring seed has also been encouraging, but the smaller 2016 harvest has meant that grain trading volumes in the period are behind the previous year.
Wynnstay has a chain of 54 country stores which have seen a small increase in like-for-like sales over recent months, mainly attributable to hardware products.
Demand at Just for Pets, the pet products business, remains subdued, reflecting the challenging high street.
The group is continuing to invest in the business, including in its technology platform, to drive efficiencies and better position the group for long term growth.
Wynnstay is invest ing about £1.2 million on a new warehouse at its site at Harlescott on the edge of Shrewsbury.